Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Census Reveals Gay People are Shockingly… Normal

By Candace Chellew-Hodge for Religion Dispatches:

According to new census figures, the number of people reporting that they are living with a same-sex partner has risen 52 percent in the last decade. That’s almost 902,000 people who are living all across the United States. Even here in my own incredibly conservative state of South Carolina, the number of same-sex couples increased and a quarter of them are raising children.

It’s those kinds of facts that have right-wing media like the Christian Post scratching their heads, with headlines like this that rival anything over at The Onion:

“Gay Couples Spread in U.S., Behave Like Straight Couples”

Um, yeah, well, duh. What exactly are gay couples supposed to act like? Wild hyenas? The story that follows that headline would be just as funny if it didn’t signal the death knell for the religious right’s jihad against gays and lesbians.

The article marvels that:

According to the research, many same-sex couples are doing something straight couples have been doing for generations: getting older, having kids, and moving to the suburbs...

These trends, both the spread of gay people living openly, and of gay populations mirroring trends in the straight population, are playing out nationwide.

That makes gays and lesbians seem somehow, oddly, oh, I don’t know, human. We age, we have kids, we move to the suburbs! Who knew?

And this is where it gets sticky for anti-gay religious leaders. As this article points out, they have no interest in letting the facts get in the way of a good lie and have vowed to continue their efforts to keep discrimination against gay people in place.

Archbishop Timothy M. Dolan, addressed the same-sex marriage issue during an interview on the CBS program 60 Minutes, urging policymakers not to tamper with the definition of what he termed “authentic marriage.”

“I love my mom, but I don’t have the right to marry her,” said the archbishop, whose national public profile as a spokesman for church values rose last year, when he was elected president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops.

Dolan could have a point if those census figures, or any other research, showed that gay people were even slightly interested in marrying their parents. Heck, most gay people would just love to have a relationship with their parents, but many of them remain estranged because of anti-gay crusaders like Dolan who have spread the lie that being gay is somehow akin to wanting to marry a parent, a dog, or a piece of furniture.

But, as more and more lesbians and gay men raising children move into the neighborhoods of suburbia, the more “normal” gay and lesbian relationships will be. The census shows this is already happening and that more and more gay and lesbian people are feeling comfortable enough to come out on a government form and be counted.

What it proves is that more and more people are catching on to the lies being told by the religious right. Gay and lesbian people don’t want to “redefine” marriage—they want the same kind of marriage everyone else has, complete with kids, a dog, and a nice neighborhood. Weird, right?


Whybenormal said...


waragainstterror said...